I recall having a conversation with ZR1_DkriderX (he prefers “Mr. Dk”, but we’re pretty informal around here lol) a while back, and he was mulling over what his next project should be. I hinted at the fact that he seemed to specialize in tropical gigs (young guy terminology), and did a fine job of it. He quickly responded with, “Hey, I can do more than tropical settings, you know. Wait ‘til you see this next one.” True to his word, Dk has proven beyond a shadow of a doubt he’s no “jungle boy burnout” with this latest release, aptly named, “Spring Fever”.
It’s about 98% custom made paved road with quite a few razor-sharp turns and several cool pint-sized jumps; just high enough to make a serious air-time lover cranky. Dk made very smart use of the models he chose for his track (and good choices, too!) in terms of placement and distribution. He went a little flower crazy on some portions, which certainly isn’t a ding against him, but rather a personal taste kind of thing. Truthfully, I think it’s a ploy to impress some girl, and if it works, more power to him! I also dig (old guy terminology) the maze-like weave he’s got going on with the brick-- the way it closes you in, restricting your lateral movement. Maximizing your speed thru those sections of the track means shaving it close to the wall, but beware not to cut it too close or you’ll be doing a seatbelt check lol. Additionally, I liked how he setup the area around checkpoint 8, making use of water as a means to sort of slow the pace and “reset” the race, if you will. There’s a jump-off there, and if you take the approach correctly, you can angle the direction of your jump to the right, bypassing a majority of the water trap, allowing for an easy entry onto small section of dirt road. The buildings you see at the beginning of the race are so subtle they’re almost an afterthought, but given the kind of atmosphere he’s created it seems to work, and quite well I might add.
I recall “Pirate’s Bay” being somewhat of a disappointment to Dk in a sense because of all the shortcuts that were exposed after it was released. Needless to say he took care not to make the same mistake again via smart checkpoint positioning, landscaping, and model placement. You’ll find a “smidgeon” (Grandma terminology) of a cut here and there, but nothing that’ll really yield quicker lap times. It’s well suited for all skill levels, however, if you’re and up and coming racer looking to test yourself against the computer trucks…well, you’ll get an easy victory because he chose to forego programming them to run the track. That’s certainly no tragedy, an besides, it’s easily overcome by grabbing 2 or 3 buds to join in with ya. Personally I think multiplayer is more fun anyway regardless of your ability or skill.
Critically speaking there’s just not much to nag him about, and I would too if he supplied me with enough flaws to use as ammo lol. However…there are two discrepancies associated with the texture sets he used, and he knew about them prior to releasing the track. The first had to do with an alignment
problem of the white borderlines on either side of the track. He consulted with The Grand Pu-bah of Track Makers, Malibu350 (trust me, he likes that kinda crap…the name title, I mean lol) who provided instructions on how to repair the problem, but Dk insisted it was too hard (wimp). The second is a slight texture-blending
flaw he contends would have necessitated tearing apart huge portions of the track to fix, and in his mind he couldn’t justify the time and labor for such a minor repair (sissy) lol.
It’s ok I’m allowed to poke a little fun at Dk because he’s a friend of mine
. Where beta testing and track reviews are concerned I simply report what I see – good and bad. He knows and expects that, so it’s all good in the end. With that said, “Spring Fever” marks the coming of age of one ZR1_DkriderX. No he didn’t make any of the models you’ll see in this track, but what he did do was make excellent use out of what was already out there (and gave proper credit to the craftsmen that did the work) by applying them to a very nice layout that’s great fun to race, and jammed-packed with ambiance. Of course, a well-placed picture of yours truly would’ve definitely enhanced that ambiance…but since Dk maxed out the model count he’d have to sacrifice a tree or bush or something to insert my picture. Hehe my guess is he’s probably a tightwad when it comes models just like another track maker whose name I won’t mention (SLO_HotShoe) lol.
“Spring Fever” is a must have for anyone who enjoys fast-paced, shortcut-free, beautifully decorated tracks ideally suited for 2 to 3 racers. As far as I’m concerned this is the youngster’s best work to date, and the Copey Rating criteria confirmed it by awarding it a righteous 9
out of 10
possible points! Heck even the <u>Better Homes & Gardens</u>
magazine called to say "Spring Fever" earned they're prestigious seal of approval! Now I ask you, is that the mark of a good track, or what? LOL
Suffice to say you’ve outdone yourself, partner. Man…with each outing you get better and better, and I have no reason to believe that trend will change any time soon. As always, it was a sincere pleasure working with you, Dk. I wish I could say that for a couple of my track making teammates, but hey, since I’m the king of discretion I’ll withhold mentioning any names (HotShoe, Preacher, Fila, Gutterboy). As for you, my man - hope to do it again real soon.
Great job, bud – super even! Keep up the good work!!
<font size=1>Edited by SLO_COPE (03-03-2003)